In situ remediation of contaminated sediments using thin-layer capping: efficiency in contaminant retention and ecological implications
2013 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Hydrophobic organic contaminants (HOCs) often reside in sediments sorbed to particles, most tightly to particles with high content of organic carbon. If persistent, such pollutants can accumulate in the sediment for many years and constitute a contamination risk for sediment-living organisms and organisms at higher trophic levels, including humans.
Since traditional remediation techniques are associated with complications (e.g. release of contaminants during dredging operations, disturbance of benthic faunal communities), or constraints (handling of large amounts of contaminated sediment and water, limitations due to depth and size of the area, high costs), there is a need for new alternative methods.
In situ remediation through thin-layer capping (a few centimeter cover) with a sorbing material such as activated carbon (AC) has been proposed as an alternative remediation method. Compared to traditional remediation techniques, AC amendment in a thin layer means less material handling and lower costs and is assumed to be less disruptive to benthic communities. The objectives of this thesis were to investigate the ecological effects from thin layer capping as well as the efficiency in contaminant retention.
Thin layer capping amended with AC proved to reduce availability of HOCs to the tested organisms, the gastropod Nassarius nitidus (Paper II), the clam Abra nitida (Paper III) and to polychaete worms (Paper II and III). The remediation technique also decreased the sediment-to-water fluxes of the contaminants (Paper II and III).
However, AC amended thin-layer capping was also found to cause negative biological effects. In laboratory studies with only a few species the negative effects were minor, or difficult to discern with the endpoints used (Paper II and III). In a larger multi-species mesocosm (boxcore) study, on the other hand, the negative effects were more prominent (Paper I) and in a large scale field study the benthic community was found to be profoundly disturbed by the AC amendment, with the effects persisting or even worsening ca one year (14 months) post amendment (Paper IV).
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences, Stockholm University , 2013. , 34 p.
Contaminated Sediment Remediation, Activated Carbon, Benthic Community, Ecological Effects, Stress, Resilience, Contaminant Sequestration, Capping Efficiency, Bioavailability, Bioaccumulation, Sediment-to-water fluxes
Biological Sciences Environmental Sciences Oceanography, Hydrology, Water Resources
Research subject Marine Ecotoxicology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-94845ISBN: 978-91-7447-795-5OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-94845DiVA: diva2:656564
2013-11-15, Nordenskiöldsalen, Geovetenskapens hus, Svante Arrhenius väg 12, Stockholm, 09:00 (English)
Koelmans, Bart, Professor
Gunnarsson, Jonas S., Professor
FunderSwedish Research Council, 210-2007-282Formas, 210-2007-282Vinnova, 210-2007-282
At the time of the doctoral defence the following papers were unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 3: Manuscript; Paper 4: Manuscript.2013-10-242013-10-162014-06-27Bibliographically approved
List of papers